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Kathrin H Dausmann, Lisa Warnecke
Torpor, the controlled depression of virtually all bodily function during scarce periods, was verified in primates under free-ranging conditions less than two decades ago. The large variety of different torpor patterns found both within and among closely related species is particularly remarkable. To help unravel the cause of these variable patterns, our review investigates primate torpor use within an evolutionary framework. First, we provide an overview of heterothermic primate species, focusing on the Malagasy lemurs, and discuss their use of daily torpor or hibernation in relation to habitat type and climatic conditions...
November 1, 2016: Physiology
Michael F Rosser, Dana M Lindemann, Anne M Barger, Matthew C Allender, Shih-Hsuan Hsiao, Mark E Howes
A 5-yr-old, intact male red ruffed lemur ( Varecia rubra ) presented for evaluation as the result of a 1-wk history of lethargy and hyporexia. Physical examination findings included thin body condition, muffled heart sounds, harsh lung sounds, and liquid brown diarrhea. Complete blood count and serum biochemistry showed an inflammatory leukogram, mild hyponatremia, and mild hypochloremia. Orthogonal trunk radiographs revealed a severe alveolar pattern in the right cranial lung lobes with cardiac silhouette effacement...
September 2016: Journal of Zoo and Wildlife Medicine: Official Publication of the American Association of Zoo Veterinarians
Joshua C Mathews, Karen E Samonds
Madagascar's subfossil record preserves a diverse community of animals including elephant birds, pygmy hippopotamus, giant lemurs, turtles, crocodiles, bats, rodents, and carnivorans. These fossil accumulations give us a window into the island's past from 80,000 years ago to a mere few hundred years ago, recording the extinction of some groups and the persistence of others. The crocodylian subfossil record is limited to two taxa, Voay robustus and Crocodylus niloticus, found at sites distributed throughout the island...
2016: PeerJ
Rachel H Dunn, Kenneth D Rose, Rajendra S Rana, Kishor Kumar, Ashok Sahni, Thierry Smith
The oldest primates of modern aspect (euprimates) appear abruptly on the Holarctic continents during a brief episode of global warming known as the Paleocene-Eocene Thermal Maximum, at the beginning of the Eocene (∼56 Ma). When they first appear in the fossil record, they are already divided into two distinct clades, Adapoidea (basal members of Strepsirrhini, which includes extant lemurs, lorises, and bushbabies) and Omomyidae (basal Haplorhini, which comprises living tarsiers, monkeys, and apes). Both groups have recently been discovered in the early Eocene Cambay Shale Formation of Vastan lignite mine, Gujarat, India, where they are known mainly from teeth and jaws...
October 2016: Journal of Human Evolution
Marko Dubicanac, Marine Joly, Julia Strüve, Ingo Nolte, Nadine Mestre-Francés, Jean-Michel Verdier, Elke Zimmermann
OBJECTIVE: The aim of this study was to assess the practicability of common tonometers used in veterinary medicine for rapid intraocular pressure (IOP) screening, to calibrate IOP values gained by the tonometers, and to define a reference IOP value for the healthy eye in a new primate model for aging research, the gray mouse lemur. STUDIED ANIMALS AND PROCEDURES: TonoVet(®) and the TonoPen(™) measurements were calibrated manometrically in healthy enucleated eyes of mouse lemurs euthanized for veterinary reasons...
September 13, 2016: Veterinary Ophthalmology
Christian Schopf, Sabine Schmidt, Elke Zimmermann
When exposed to enhanced background noise, humans avoid signal masking by increasing the amplitude of the voice, a phenomenon termed the Lombard effect. This auditory feedback-mediated voice control has also been found in monkeys, bats, cetaceans, fish and some frogs and birds. We studied the Lombard effect for the first time in a phylogenetically basal primate, the grey mouse lemur, Microcebus murinus. When background noise was increased, mouse lemurs were able to raise the amplitude of the voice, comparable to monkeys, but they did not show this effect consistently across context/individuals...
2016: PeerJ
Govinda Sharma, Koji Tsutsumi, Taro Saito, Akiko Asada, Kanae Ando, Mineko Tomomura, Shin-Ichi Hisanaga
Neurite formation, a fundamental process in neuronal maturation, requires the coordinated regulation of cytoskeletal reorganization and membrane transport. Compared to the understanding of cytoskeletal functions, less is known about the supply of membranes to growing neurites. Lemur kinase 1A (LMTK1A) is an endosomal protein kinase that is highly expressed in neurons. We recently reported that LMTK1A regulates the trafficking of Rab11-positive recycling endosomes in growing axons and dendrites. Here, we used the kinase-negative (kn) mutant to investigate the role of the kinase activity of LMTK1A in its cellular localization and interactions with the cytoskeleton in Neuro2A and PC-12 cells...
October 2016: Genes to Cells: Devoted to Molecular & Cellular Mechanisms
Charlie J Gardner
Despite an increasing recognition of the ecosystem services provided by mangroves, we know little about their role in maintaining terrestrial biodiversity, including primates. Madagascar's lemurs are a top global conservation priority, with 94 % of species threatened with extinction, but records of their occurrence in mangroves are scarce. I used a mixed-methods approach to collect published and unpublished observations of lemurs in mangroves: I carried out a systematic literature search and supplemented this with a targeted information request to 1243 researchers, conservation and tourism professionals, and others who may have visited mangroves in Madagascar...
2016: International Journal of Primatology
Erica M Tennenhouse, Sarah Putman, Nicole P Boisseau, Janine L Brown
Relationships between the hypothalamic-pituitary adrenal and hypothalamic-pituitary gonadal axes and social behaviour in primates are complex. By using hair to quantify steroid hormones, one can obtain retrospective estimates of long-term free hormone levels from a single sample. In this study, hair was used to quantify long-term levels of cortisol, testosterone, and estradiol among members of a colony of ring-tailed lemurs (Lemur catta) to explore associations between intra- and intersexual levels of these hormones and social behaviour between the breeding and birthing seasons...
August 20, 2016: Primates; Journal of Primatology
Timothy D Smith, Molly C Martell, James B Rossie, Christopher J Bonar, Valerie B DeLeon
The nasal cavity of strepsirrhine primates (lemurs and lorises) has the most primitive arrangement of extant primates. In nocturnal species, the numerous turbinals of the ethmoid bear a large surface area of olfactory mucosa (OM). In the present study, we examine turbinal development in four genera of diurnal or cathemeral lemuriformes. In addition, we examined an age series of each genus in order to detect whether structures bearing OM as opposed to respiratory mucosa (RM) develop differently, as has been observed in nocturnal strepsirrhines...
August 18, 2016: Anatomical Record: Advances in Integrative Anatomy and Evolutionary Biology
Daniel J Ballhorn, Fanny Patrika Rakotoarivelo, Stefanie Kautz
Feeding strategies of specialist herbivores often originate from the coevolutionary arms race of plant defenses and counter-adaptations of herbivores. The interaction between bamboo lemurs and cyanogenic bamboos on Madagascar represents a unique system to study diffuse coevolutionary processes between mammalian herbivores and plant defenses. Bamboo lemurs have different degrees of dietary specialization while bamboos show different levels of chemical defense. In this study, we found variation in cyanogenic potential (HCNp) and nutritive characteristics among five sympatric bamboo species in the Ranomafana area, southeastern Madagascar...
2016: PloS One
Modesta Makungu, Wencke M du Plessis, Michelle Barrows, Hermanus B Groenewald, Katja N Koeppel
The ring-tailed lemur (Lemur catta) is primarily distributed in south and southwestern Madagascar. It is classified as an endangered species by the International Union for Conservation of Nature. Various abdominal diseases, such as hepatic lipidosis, intestinal ulcers, cystitis, urinary tract obstruction, and neoplasia (e.g., colonic adenocarcinoma and cholangiocarcinoma), have been reported in this species. The aim of this study was to describe the normal radiographic and ultrasonographic abdominal anatomy in captive ring-tailed lemurs to provide guidance for clinical use...
June 2016: Journal of Zoo and Wildlife Medicine: Official Publication of the American Association of Zoo Veterinarians
Anne D Yoder, C Ryan Campbell, Marina B Blanco, Mario Dos Reis, Jörg U Ganzhorn, Steven M Goodman, Kelsie E Hunnicutt, Peter A Larsen, Peter M Kappeler, Rodin M Rasoloarison, José M Ralison, David L Swofford, David W Weisrock
Phylogeographic analysis can be described as the study of the geological and climatological processes that have produced contemporary geographic distributions of populations and species. Here, we attempt to understand how the dynamic process of landscape change on Madagascar has shaped the distribution of a targeted clade of mouse lemurs (genus Microcebus) and, conversely, how phylogenetic and population genetic patterns in these small primates can reciprocally advance our understanding of Madagascar's prehuman environment...
July 19, 2016: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Sheena L Faherty, José Luis Villanueva-Cañas, Peter H Klopfer, M Mar Albà, Anne D Yoder
Hibernation is a complex physiological response that some mammalian species employ to evade energetic demands. Previous work in mammalian hibernators suggests that hibernation is activated not by a set of genes unique to hibernators, but by differential expression of genes that are present in all mammals. This question of universal genetic mechanisms requires further investigation and can only be tested through additional investigations of phylogenetically dispersed species. To explore this question, we use RNA-Seq to investigate gene expression dynamics as they relate to the varying physiological states experienced throughout the year in a group of primate hibernators-Madagascar's dwarf lemurs (genus Cheirogaleus)...
2016: Genome Biology and Evolution
Rachel Mary Sawyer, Zo Samuel Ella Fenosoa, Aristide Andrianarimisa, Giuseppe Donati
Madagascar is one of the world's biodiversity hotspots. The island's past and current rates of deforestation and habitat disturbance threaten its plethora of endemic biodiversity. On Madagascar, tavy (slash and burn agriculture), land conversion for rice cultivation, illegal hardwood logging and bushmeat hunting are the major contributors to habitat disturbance. Understanding species-specific responses to habitat disturbance across different habitat types is crucial when designing conservation strategies. We surveyed three nocturnal lemur species in four forest types of varying habitat disturbance on the Masoala Peninsula, northeastern Madagascar...
July 9, 2016: Primates; Journal of Primatology
Joyce A Parga, Michelle L Sauther, Frank P Cuozzo, Ibrahim Antho Youssouf Jacky, Richard R Lawler, Robert W Sussman, Lisa Gould, Jennifer Pastorini
In group-living species with male dominance hierarchies where receptive periods of females do not overlap, high male reproductive skew would be predicted. However, the existence of female multiple mating and alternative male mating strategies can call into question single-male monopolization of paternity in groups. Ring-tailed lemurs (Lemur catta) are seasonally breeding primates that live in multi-male, multi-female groups. Although established groups show male dominance hierarchies, male dominance relationships can break down during mating periods...
July 8, 2016: American Journal of Primatology
Marco Gamba, Valeria Torti, Vittoria Estienne, Rose M Randrianarison, Daria Valente, Paolo Rovara, Giovanna Bonadonna, Olivier Friard, Cristina Giacoma
A crucial, common feature of speech and music is that they show non-random structures over time. It is an open question which of the other species share rhythmic abilities with humans, but in most cases the lack of knowledge about their behavioral displays prevents further studies. Indris are the only lemurs who sing. They produce loud howling cries that can be heard at several kilometers, in which all members of a group usually sing. We tested whether overlapping and turn-taking during the songs followed a precise pattern by analysing the temporal structure of the individuals' contribution to the song...
2016: Frontiers in Neuroscience
Timothy M Eppley, Giuseppe Donati, Jörg U Ganzhorn
OBJECTIVES: The proximate and ultimate determinants that may have prompted some primates to shift from an arboreal to terrestrial feeding niche, whether due to environmental change, seasonality, and/or predation pressure, are poorly understood. Within a fragmented littoral forest in southeast Madagascar, an arboreal strepsirrhine population spends a large proportion of time on the ground, thus we aimed to identify which factors influence terrestrial feeding. METHODS: From January to December 2013, we conducted 103 full-day focal follows on three social groups of southern bamboo lemurs H...
October 2016: American Journal of Physical Anthropology
Damiano Marchi, Christopher B Ruff, Alessio Capobianco, Katherine L Rafferty, Michael B Habib, Biren A Patel
Palaeopropithecids, or "sloth lemurs," are a diverse clade of large-bodied Malagasy subfossil primates characterized by their inferred suspensory positional behavior. The most recently discovered genus of the palaeopropithecids is Babakotia, and it has been described as more arboreal than Mesopropithecus, but less than Palaeopropithecus. In this article, the within-bone and between-bones articular and cross-sectional diaphyseal proportions of the humerus and femur of Babakotia were compared to extant lemurs, Mesopropithecus and Palaeopropithecus in order to further understand its arboreal adaptations...
September 2016: Journal of Morphology
Dalia Denapaite, Martin Rieger, Sophie Köndgen, Reinhold Brückner, Irma Ochigava, Peter Kappeler, Kerstin Mätz-Rensing, Fabian Leendertz, Regine Hakenbeck
Viridans streptococci were obtained from primates (great apes, rhesus monkeys, and ring-tailed lemurs) held in captivity, as well as from free-living animals (chimpanzees and lemurs) for whom contact with humans is highly restricted. Isolates represented a variety of viridans streptococci, including unknown species. Streptococcus oralis was frequently isolated from samples from great apes. Genotypic methods revealed that most of the strains clustered on separate lineages outside the main cluster of human S...
March 2016: MSphere
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